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Tuesday, April 1

Great Landscape Work

Caption: The Beach Flower, Camera: Hasselblad H1, Lens: 35mm,
Film: Fuji Velvia 50, Aperture: f/16, Exposure: 4s, 
Filters: Lee ND
 Graduated Hard 0.6. By Marek Potoma.

I've always spent a lot of time looking at photography websites, something that intensified after I got an iPad which I plug directly into the cerebral cortex via an enhanced USB connection - at least that's what Cath suspects. And yet, there are always new sites that I stumble across and immediately wonder how I could possibly have missed them.

One such is this landscape site which is published by a photographers Otakar Hevler and Marek Potoma. It's full of quite stunning landscapes, many in good old film. I found it whilst looking through the stats for The Online Darkroom. It was in the list of referring sites which pass traffic on to me. I'm always curious what the referring blog has to say about TOD that would prompt its readers to pay me a visit so I had to go and check it out.

Their website gave TOD a mention saying it was "one of the best blogs related to traditional darkroom", which was very nice of them. Of course, this didn't in any way colour my judgement when it came to giving Land and Colors a plug here. It really didn't. No.

Otaker is another who shares my view of the ideal photographic weather. He said, "Most of my friends do not understand why I am going out when the weather conditions are so miserable that nobody would let the dog out and why I am always complaining when the perfect sunny day is pleasing all of them."

However, it seems they took this to extremes earlier this month when they were stranded on the Isle of Harris when strong winds led to the cancellation of the ferry back to the mainland, causing them to miss their flights home. Foreign visitors sometimes don't realise what we Scottish photographers have to put up with until they experience it for themselves.

Marek explained, "The Isle of Harris and Lewis sounded like the right destination, and we have not changed the timing of our annual Land & Colors tour despite I read somewhere that coming to Hebrides in the winter time calls for lots of problems. Now I know what they meant… I can hardly remember a less favourable weather conditions, way too much of heavy raining and winds often prevented us from pulling the cameras out at all. I love tough goings but this just has been largely excessive. The cancelled ferry service speaks for itself…"

Been there and got the t-shirt. It's one of the reasons I haven't done much long-exposure photography lately: I got fed up of being buffeted by strong winds, soaked by horizontal rain and risking the onset of trench foot as the waves repeatedly drenched my trainers.

Please have a look at the Land and Colours site if you'd like to see some lovely landscape work. I don't do much colour work myself but I still appreciate it if it's done on film. I can't say the same for digital as I'm fed up of over-saturated, semi HDR'd images. There are also plenty of lovely black and white images. Their blog, in particular, is an enjoyable read.

If only we could persuade Otakar and Marek to stick exclusively to film we'd be able to give Land and Colors an unqualified thumbs-up!


Herman Sheephouse said...

The film images are better than the digital Bruce!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the link, Bruce, wonderful landscape photography and the videos of darkroom work has me wanting a darkroom again!
Hope this post makes it through.